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Inside Washington (05/03/2010)
* WASHINGTON (5/4/10)--A bipartisan group of lawmakers is moving to restore the Federal Reserve Board’s powers over 800 state-chartered banks and 5,000 holding companies. Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd’s (D-Conn.) regulatory reform legislation would strip the Fed of its powers over all but 55 holding companies. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas) introduced an amendment Friday that would reverse Dodd’s measure. The amendment is backed by Sens. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and Jon Tester (D-Mont.), who said the Fed should “keep its window into smaller institutions” (American Banker May 3). Hutchison said excluding community banks from the Fed’s supervision would create inequality with larger institutions and give the impression that regulators believe some firms are too big to fail--which is what some lawmakers are “trying to get away from,” he said ... * WASHINGTON (5/4/10)--Last week, the Federal Reserve cleared its holdings of Commercial Paper Funding Facility (CPFF). The facility stopped lending on Feb. 1. CPFF was created in 2008 when companies struggled to obtain short-term loans, or commercial paper. Now, investors are willing to lend to companies that rely on commercial paper to pay their employees and landlords. Their need for such loans has fallen in the economy--and some have found better rates in the corporate bond market (Dow Jones May 3). Companies that used the CPFF include American Express Co., American International Group and General Electric Co. ... * WASHINGTON (5/4/10)--The Treasury Department sold PNC Financial Services Group Inc.’s bailout warrants for $324.2 million in the third-largest sale of TARP fund recipients’ warrants. The 16.9 million warrants from the banking company sold for $19.20 each, compared with the minimum bid of $15. PNC had granted the warrants and shares to Treasury in exchange for bailout money through the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). The company received $7.58 billion in TARP funds, which it repaid in February ... * WASHINGTON (5/4/10)--The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) has proposed to amend its regulations to revise how it assesses the premiums large financial institutions pay. The agency said it wishes to take a more forward view of risk and better account for losses the FDIC would incur if the institution fails (Federal Register May 3). Comments must be received in 60 days ...

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